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29
Nov
2017

George's brain cancer story

 By George Diamond

                                                 
George and his father during his brain cancer treatment

My father, Alexander Diamond, began suffering from issues relating to dizziness and loss of orientation towards the end of 2016. Subsequently, dad was rushed into the Canberra Hospital after he suffered a seizure that impacted his speech and control in his right arm.

Following an emergency CT scan, we were advised that a 5cm tumour was present in the left perennial region of Dad’s brain

Further MRI’s were undertaken after Dad’s relocation to the neurosurgery ward, which confirmed the large tumour was likely to be a high-grade glioma. Thankfully, this was operable with a straightforward procedure which carried minimal risk, but carried a prognosis that averaged just 12 months.

The operation to remove the tumour was a success, with dad beaming with light after he came to in recovery. Following a short stint in hospital, Dad returned home and quickly tended to his garden. Christmas then rolled around, where we spent the day together with our entire family. This was a special day, and we all felt very blessed knowing that the outlook at some point would change.

                                                                      

After the new year in 2017, Dad began his radiation treatment that spanned for six weeks. This gruelling period took it out of dad, who became extremely frail, lost his short-term memory, and became very agitated with everything around him. Dad continued chemotherapy, which he tolerated well. However, too much damage was done by the radiation, and he never seemed to recover.

His health continued to decline, becoming less and less mobile, to the point where we converted his room into a mini hospital. Not long after, Dad was admitted back to the Canberra Hospital in early June to have further MRIs, which showed no evidence of the cancer returning. However, Dad’s health declined dramatically during his stay, with his family remaining by his bedside as if he was at home. 

                                                                    
Celebrating George's dad's 80th birthday 

Over the next couple of days, he suffered uncontrollable seizures, which eventually took their toll, leading him to pass away with all his family at his side on July 3, 2017, aged 80. This was just four days prior to the birth of his fifth grandchild, Katerina. Prior to these events, my father, at age 79, was an extremely fit grandfather who was aspiring to new challenges and goals, and excited about his upcoming travels to Greece with his family and grandchildren. Sadly, he never recovered after his treatments, and we lost him much earlier than anticipated.

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